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Author Archive for: jentwistle

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How to Grow Responsible, Independent Children

When it comes to responsibilities for kids at home many things have changed since I was a kid.  When my generation was growing up most kids learned to cook, clean, tidy up after themselves, manage their own schedules and more.  Today, many kids are living in the “age of entitlement” where very few responsibilities fall on them, and many don’t know how to complete the simplest of household chores.

Teaching responsibility to kids by assigning them age-appropriate chores helps to build independence, a sense of self and prepares them for what lies ahead.

We encourage you to use this great FREE PRINTABLE (available below) to help kids become more responsible at home.

Discuss with your children some tasks they can help with on a daily basis and add these to the chart.  Be sure to review this with the kids, confirm the expectations, and get their commitment.

Here are some age-appropriate tasks or “chores” as suggestions:

Toddler (2-3)

·    Put dirty clothes in laundry basket

·    Help set the table for meals

·    Tidy toys after playing

Ages 4-5

·    Put toys away when finished

·    Make their bed

·    Clear dishes after meals

·    Prepare snacks/drinks

·    Feed pets

Ages 6-7

·    Fold laundry

·    Dust bedroom

·    Help prepare meals (with assistance)

·    Pack school lunches and backpack

·    Yard work (with assistance)

Ages 8-11

·    Load and unload the dishwasher

·    Operate laundry (with assistance)

·    Clean bedroom

·    Help put away groceries

·    Walk and care for pets

·    Make school lunches

Ages 12 +

·    Clean bathrooms

·    Vacuum

·    Prepare a meal

·    Look after younger siblings

·    Clean floors and surfaces

·    Do laundry from start to finish

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more helpful tools for both children and adults visit our Printable Resources page.

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O-Tip of the Week: Prevent Slips in the Tub or Shower

Our O-Tip of the week series we will be providing valuable “OT-Approved Life Hacks” to provide you with simple and helpful solutions for living.

For the month of November, Fall Prevention Month, our O-Tip series will concentrate on preventing falls at home and in the community.

This week’s O-Tip of the Week focuses on simple ways to keep you safe in the bathroom, one of the most dangerous rooms in the home.

For a simple and inexpensive solution to improve bathroom safety we recommend using adhesive shower or tub strips which are easy to install, and provide added protection from falling when you are getting in and out or standing in the shower or tub with bare feet on a wet surface. Strips are easier to maintain and clean than a standard bath mat and stick better to the bottom of the tub or shower.

Learn more about how to improve safety in your bathroom in this episode from our OT-V series, Bathroom Safety.

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Book Review: Licit, Illicit, Prescribed – Substance Use and Occupational Therapy

Julie Entwistle, MBA, BHSc (OT), BSc (Health / Gerontology)

As an occupational therapist working in private practice, I have been involved with many clients who have substance abuse issues sometimes before, but more so often after injury or trauma.  Sometimes these substances were prescribed and become misused, and sometimes clients turn to substances to cope with their new life circumstance.  Either way, it is essential that the OT role include understanding, assessing and treating the whole person while recognizing the role addiction can play in influencing a recovery path and overall function.

Released in 2016, the book Licit, Illicit, Prescribed by Dr. Niki Kiepek is an all-in-one resource to help Occupational Therapists to advance their foundational knowledge and practices skills when working with clients who have problems with substance abuse.

This book is so thorough at addressing the very complicated clinical facets of substance use and abuse that it could very readily become a textbook for OT’s in their schooling, job-training, and ongoing clinical work.  It starts by providing the important background into the occupational perspective on substance abuse and links this to the models of human occupation and engagement that are the essential backbone of our profession.   It then moves to really define addiction and the many factors that influence this and how it fits with models of health and behavior.  After a very detailed look at psychoactive substances and their pharmacological properties, and the concept of harm reduction, it dives deep into Occupational Therapy Assessment and Intervention. Complete with clinical scenarios, examples and direct techniques, any OT reading this book will be able to elevate their practice and work with clients who use substances – licit, illicit or prescribed.

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How to Have a Safe Halloween

Tuesday is Halloween, a night when children dressed monsters, witches, superheroes and more hit the streets to Trick or Treat.  While Halloween can be a fun night for both kids and adults, there are many dangers associated with it.  Learn some valuable Halloween safety tips in the following from Safe Kids Worldwide to ensure your little ghosts and goblins have a fun and safe Halloween night!

Safe Kids Worldwide:  Halloween Safety Tips

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O-Tip of the Week: Ways to Prevent Sitting Disease

Our O-Tip of the week series we will be providing valuable “OT-Approved Life Hacks” to provide you with simple and helpful solutions for living. 

This week’s O-Tip of the Week focuses on ways to get you moving throughout the day in order to keep a healthy lifestyle and prevent sitting disease.

Bring a pair of running shoes with you to work and take a walk on your lunch and/or breaks.  Walking is great for cardiovascular and bone health and will help to prevent the negative effects of sitting all day.

Learn more ways to combat the negative effects of sitting disease in our post, Solutions to Stop Sitting Disease.

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A MUST READ New Guideline for Insurance OTs in Ontario

Julie Entwistle, MBA, BHSc (OT), BSc (Health / Gerontology)

With all the legislative changes in the very contentious auto insurance industry, it can be hard to stay current.  Case law, reports, position papers, and of course the high-profile circulations of the Toronto Star.  But sometimes what goes unnoticed is the work of the Colleges or Professional Associations that spend time and resources trying to provide guidance and support to those of us working in this everchanging area of practice.

In the world of Occupational Therapy, one recent document has been posted by the College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario that thoroughly speaks to the challenges, college expectations and tug-of-war that OT’s experience in this difficult sector.  This circulation, entitled “Guideline for Working with Third Party Payers” is a must-read for OT’s in the insurance industry, and serves as a useful tool for anyone (clients, lawyers, insurers, other professionals) who retain, work with, or otherwise engage with an OT for assessment or treatment services.  The guideline (https://www.coto.org/news/new-guidelines-for-working-with-third-party-payers) covers all important aspects of practice in the world of third party work, and includes the following summarized sections:

Providing Ethical and Competent Client Care reviews the Ethical responsibilities of the OT to be transparent, fair and impartial.

Defining Your Role and Setting Expectations with Stakeholders addresses how important it is for OT’s to follow the Standards for OT Assessment and to understand the limits to their own competencies when accepting referrals.

Consent and Personal Health Information discusses how to manage difficult consent situations, for example if another person indicates they got “consent” for the OT, or if a client later withdraws consent during an assessment or treatment. Importantly, it also talks to an OT’s requirement to get new consent when presented with a request to review or comment on new information that was not received when initial consent was obtained.  The submission of reports in draft form to third parties is also covered.

Managing Records and Reports reminds OT’s of their responsibility with record keeping, privacy legislation, and of course the client’s right to access their records.

Managing Conflicts of Interest considers the challenges in this high-stakes industry that is fraught with important funding decisions, conflicting agendas, and relationships that can be formed with clients, insurers, lawyers and the like.  This section deals with these competing interests, conflicting standards and opinions, personal conflicts between oneself and third parties, companies or even other professionals.  Also covered in this section is referrals received from friends or family members, being requested to observe an independent medical exam, and treating clients that are related.  OT’s are reminded that practicing within a conflict of interest (perceived, real or implied) is considered professional misconduct.

Managing Professional Boundaries are addressed and this section highlights different types of potential boundary crossings with clients and referral sources / payers.  It speaks to monetary relationships and financial / gift incentives as a boundary crossing and one that can jeopardize client outcomes and breach professional boundaries.

Use of Title is discussed as a reminder to the different titles an OT may have in providing service, and how to be clear about their role at all times.

Independent Practice reviews the nature of being an “independent contractor or provider” and the resources available to set up, and run, an independent operation.

Lastly, the guideline covers the expectations for providing services to clients who Live Outside of Ontario and reminds OT’s that the client’s location, not theirs, is the jurisdictional boundary and practicing outside of Ontario is not permitted unless the OT has a license in that location as well.

Overall, this document is a useful tool and hard reminder to OT’s of their obligations and expectations as licensed professionals in Ontario.  It may also prove helpful for other stakeholders to review, such that they too understand the rules and boundaries on OT’s so that they can be mindful of these in their working relationships with us.

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A Step in the Right Direction — Forward

The Forward Movement, an advocacy group, is working hard to raise awareness and make change in Ontario.  The group is working to have Ontario officially adopt the Dynamic Symbol of Access to replace the currently used International Symbol of Access.  Why?  The dynamic symbol shows action and movement symbolizing differing abilities and can help to change the way society views disability.

It was all about the disability, and not about the person,” says Dylan Itzikowitz, co-founder of The Forward Movement, about the current symbol.

Learn more about The Forward Movement in the following article from CBC News.

CBC News:  Accessibility activists want to ditch iconic symbol highlighting the wheelchair, not the person

How can you support The Forward Movement?  Sign the petition, make a donation, follow The Forward Movement on social media, and/or become a Proud Partner like us.  Learn more about these great ways to get involved by visiting www.theforwardmovement.ca.